Famous Seamus will return to the races in the 2014 The Shorts, but trainer Noel Mayfield-Smith is not expecting much from the Group 1 winning sprinter at Royal Randwick on Saturday.
Famous Seamus has not recorded a first-up victory since he won on debut at Gosford in 2011 and has generally produced some of his worst runs at the start of his racing preparations.
The Elusive City gelding will carry the top weight of 58 kilograms in the Group 2 The Shorts (1100m) and Mayfield-Smith told Racing Ahead that he is not confident about the chances of his star galloper this weekend.
“He is very good,” Mayfield-Smith said.
“He spent five weeks in Queensland afterwards and he is in really good form.
“It will be much the same.
“The Shorts isn’t a good race for him in the fact that it is a set weights plus penalties, so he will carry a bit of weight and the others meet him better.
“I would like to be going into a weight-for-age race, which is the Premier’s Stakes later on.
“His first-up run isn’t terrific, so we will just get it out of the way.”
Mayfield-Smith believes that there are a number of options for Famous Seamus during the 2014 Spring Racing Carnival and is set to include the six-year-old in the nominations for the Group 1 Manikato Stakes (1200m) at Moonee Valley on October 24, while also eyeing races like the Group 2 Premiere Stakes (1200m) in Sydney on October 4.
Famous Seamus recorded the biggest win of his career to date when he took out the Group 1 BTC Cup (1200m) at Doomben on May 10, but Mayfield-Smith believes that the best form is still in front of the tough gelding.
“A lot will depend on the weather,” Mayfield-Smith said.
“If is wet and the tracks become shifty we will look at Perth, otherwise he will go to the Premier’s Cup or the Gilgai in Melbourne.
“We will gauge it from there and I will nominate him for the Manikato Stakes and other races like the Caulfield Sprint, the Yellowglen and those type of races.
“I will be sticking to 1200 and I won’t push him out to a 1400 or anything like that.
“He didn’t race as a two-year-old and he even looks better.
“He is stronger and he is very good.”
Famous Seamus will face stiff competition in The Shorts; with the likes of Terravista, Sessions, Rain Affair, Villa Verde and Adebisi set to contest the $200,000 event.